The Phonebook in Iceland

Oliver and I have both become a little obsessed with the Icelandic scheme for assigning names to children. When I first read that one side-effect of this is that the telephone books are sorted by first name here I didn’t believe it, but yesterday I got a chance to open one up, and it’s true:

Iceland Phone Book: Sorted by First Name


sebastien's picture
sebastien on September 25, 2008 - 23:03 Permalink

Phone books in Brazil work that way too.

Bruno Figueiredo's picture
Bruno Figueiredo on September 26, 2008 - 14:27 Permalink

By the way, what are the little white crosses on red squares? I’m curious.

oliver's picture
oliver on September 30, 2008 - 15:22 Permalink

Listing by first name might be more practical in Iceland, traditionally at least. Are there very many traditional Icelandic last names? Also there’s the potential confusion of Peter/”Son of Peter”/”From Peter’s Town” that might make last names less reliably memorable.